Washingtonville “Lions Den” Gets Boost from Bottles
By Eugenia Moskowitz
The Lions Den inclusive playground, which will partly replace and greatly expand the current playground at 9/11 Memorial Park on Ahern Blvd. in Washingtonville, is being funded in large part by recycling efforts from Washingtonville residents, businesses, and school children.
With monies also going to the Country Kids Food Pantry, children at the three elementary schools (with help from their teachers) have been collecting deposit bottles and turning them in to Celina Rofer, project organizer at the Greater Washingtonville Lions Club.
Appropriate all children, both special needs and especially athletic children, the inclusive playground will have structures which many children can use simultaneously, making for less “wait” time and more fun time. For more detailed videos of the structures in action, please go to the “Greater Washingtonville Lions Club” facebook page.
Mrs. Yager and Mrs. Bucco’s first grade class at Taft Elementary School unveiled their bottlecap art project which combined science and environmental lessons with art concepts, all while adding funds from 7,459 bottles to the Lions Den Playground and the Food Pantry. “Small hands help the community,” they said at a special Wizard Assembly held on the last day of school. (Photo above)
School’s Out for Summer!
Washingtonville buses rolled for the last time this school year as children at the three elementary schools crowded by the windows and waved goodbye to their teachers for the summer. Fifth graders wept as they left their schools and hugged their teachers goodbye. Their teachers wished them well in middle school and wiped away tears as well.
Mr. Harold Retires
After decades in the Washingtonville school district as a custodian and then crossing guard (both at Taft and at the Middle/High School area), Harold Hartz has retired. Known as the man who always has peppermint LifeSavers in his vest pocket, Mr. Harold was well loved by children and parents alike. So much so that parents have suggested renaming the crossing area in front of Taft “Harold Way” and adding a sign. Support for this idea can be directed towards school superintendent Roy Reese.
Drop Us a Message
Washingtonville second grader Emily Outly brainstormed and created this painted wooden message box to be placed near the Kindness Art Garden in front of Taft Elementary School. Here, messages of any kind can be written and placed inside for others to read and think about, and maybe even respond to. Capitalizing on writing skills, dating letters, the sense and structure of time, and anything from freehand to formal writing, the letters and notes can be heartfelt or funny, whatever the child wants to say. At the year’s final Wizard Assembly, principal Barbara Quinn told the entire student body, but especially the fifth graders, “You don’t need us adults to come up with ideas. All of you are part of Wizard Nation, each of you can make a difference with one idea, one voice, and determination. As you move on to the middle school, be who you are, don’t let anything change you.” And don’t forget to drop us a message.
(Photos by Eugenia Moskowitz)